WASHINGTON — Hillary Clinton said Sunday she’ll begin her efforts to court Bernie Sanders supporters and unify the Democratic Party on Wednesday and called on the Vermont senator to “do the same.”
She’s also pressuring Sanders, her primary rival, to do the same after the last contests in California, New Jersey, New Mexico, South Dakota and Montana are held Tuesday. Clinton is expected to have secured the number of pledged delegates and superdelegates necessary to earn the nomination by those contests.
“After Tuesday, I’m going to do everything I can to reach out, to try to unify the Democratic Party, and I expect Sen. Sanders to do the same,” Clinton told CNN’s Jake Tapper in an interview on “State of the Union.”
“And we will come together and be prepared to go to the convention in a unified way, to make our case, to leave the convention, to go into the general election to defeat Donald Trump,” Clinton said.
The likely Democratic nominee said she and Sanders “share so many of the same goals. We have different approaches, different ideas about how best to achieve those.”
In a separate interview on “State of the Union,” Sanders said Clinton will have to work hard to win over his supporters.
The Vermont senator said he can’t “snap my fingers” and send them into Clinton’s camp.
“It is Secretary Clinton’s job to explain to those people why she should get their support. And that means she’s going to have to address their needs,” Sanders said.
Still, asked if he’d work to defeat Donald Trump in the fall no matter who is the Democratic nominee, Sanders said: “Yes.”
He remained defiant about the Democratic nomination at an event Saturday, claiming, “the Democratic National Convention will be a contested convention,” because Clinton would be reliant on superdelegates to cross the finish line — who could change their minds, however unlikely that is.